House In Leiria / Aires Mateus

© FG+SG – Fernando Guerra, Sergio Guerra

Architects: Manuel Aires Mateus
Location: , Portugal
Collaborator: Humberto Fonseca, Luísa Sol, Tiago Santos
Project year: 2008 – 2010
Photographs: FG+SG – Fernando Guerra, Sergio Guerra

© FG+SG – Fernando Guerra, Sergio Guerra

The site is on the outskirts of Leiria, in a high position overlooking the city.

section 04
© FG+SG – Fernando Guerra, Sergio Guerra

The functions are banal: a house divided in private area with bedrooms, and social area with living-rooms. The private areas are at street level under the plot, around a central courtyard with rooms opening to private patios in a intimate environment. The living rooms are around a void, that collects light from above and gazes the castle at the city centre.

© FG+SG – Fernando Guerra, Sergio Guerra

The house is a recognizable archetype emptied of its centre by the light designed by a three heighted courtyard that opens horizontally at the garden level. The bedroom courtyards, revealed in the garden, relate with this archetypal object providing different readings on its scale. Scale and volume are controlled in a chaotic context, with a clear identity that from its core relates with the historical legacy far away: the Leiria Castle.

Cite: "House In Leiria / Aires Mateus" 10 Mar 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed 22 May 2015. <>
  • Jay Hyeongjin Lee

    I luv ur work. Awesome!!

    • Al

      I heard that the lady still waiting for the husband that fallen into one of the holes after he came home drunk !! we are so sorry for that .

      • Chen Di

        really? I also think it is not safe enough, especially when the room owner has a child~

  • wharf rat

    I feel lonely.

    • james


  • V

    Very nice

  • Aaron

    sencillo como bello…

  • Shawn Syazwan

    this is amazing! lovely spaces
    ill definitely want to live in it

  • Maarten

    Beautiful piece of architecture. Amazing spaces and incredible details! This is modern craftsmanship at its best!

  • up_today_arch

    no words…. well done, well detailed, well realised minimal approach… congr!!!

  • dan

    instant masterpiece

  • Adrem

    Beautiful project, except for those way-too-hieratical plans; maybe it’s my fault, but i had to cross them with the pictures to get a hint of how the spaces are arranged.

  • Quelava

    Poor kids, living in a hole…
    and when they get out to play in the yard, they have to be on a leash so they wouldn’t fall in the hole.
    Criminally autistic design. Go design a gallery, if You have so much of a problem with windows to the outside. Maybe the clients insisted on it?
    “Here, kids, mommy and daddy made a beautiful prison for all of us!”

  • .

    I must disagree with everybody. I really don’t think that surroundings are so hideous that you that you don’t put any window to them: “The site is on the outskirts of Leiria, in a high position overlooking the city.” You can have your view only to the sky or white walls. I wonder how you can convince client to something like that???

  • bLogHouse

    Although beautifully done, this is a very introvert house, denying its inhabitants two basic freedoms – the freedom of views(except thru the “tunnel”) and the freedom of movement( getting to the surface from the bedrooms)